The Firm: Maximum Cardio

Carissa Foster
Year Released: 1999

Categories: Floor Aerobics/Hi-Lo/Dance

This workout has already been broken down, so I am just going to add my opinions on the workout.

I absolutely ADORE this workout. It is one of my cardio staples. As I have read in other reviews, it is the easiest of the three Firm Cardio workouts (Cardio Burn with Tamela Hastie and Power Cardio with Dale Brabham). I found Cardio Burn to be too weight-heavy (and the weights utilized during the warm-up and stretch weirded me out) and I have not attempted Power Cardio in full, only from selected tunes that were put into other Firm compilations, and they were all very high impact.

The music is amazing, even for an Anna Benson production (she has an excellent music standard as it is but this is extra nice!), the cuing is excellent, Carissa is an inspiration to look at, the choreography is fairly easy to follow (I am not good with choreography but I mastered the moves after two or three times). As another reviewer said the workout has a lot of 4-limb moves, really does fatigue the arms. I use 5# dumbbells and would not recommend anything more than that. She does some high impact but I would mostly say low impact on the step and with the 4-limb. She does do a strength section at the end (short, around 10 minutes) after the cardio (which clocks in at about 30 minutes) with a barbell but the moves are too quick to heavy up, it is more like aerobic strengthening. Then she finishes with a brief ab segment and the stretch. For a cardio day I usually skip the 10 minute strengthening and move to the ab and stretch for a 35 or so minute workout.

It really is an excellent workout, has a GREAT fun factor, and it is “true” cardio unlike other cardio workouts from the Firm (:cough: Firm Cardio :cough:) which are really strength workouts with aerobics mixed in, in my opinion. It has an unmistakable Anna Benson-Firm flair (with the mansion set, etc.). If you like Anna Benson productions and have not yet tried Maximum Cardio, I would highly recommend this for it’s fun factor and it’s great music. A+!

Instructor Comments:
I really like Carissa Foster. She is excellent with her cues and like I said an inspiration to look at – she’s slender and built and has legs up to “here”! I have the old Fitprime Core First with her, as well as Firm Super Sculpt where she is a co-instructor but Maximum Cardio was really her best workout.

Emily B.